Nineteenth-century emigration from Scotland to the U.S. was the continuation of a process that had its roots in the seventeenth century. Unlike the majority of European emigrants, who represented surplus rural workers from an agrarian society, the Scottish emigrants of the Victorian period were skilled, educated workers from urban industrial backgrounds whose expertise was in great demand in the rapidly industrializing cities of North America. Between 1825 and 1838, more than 60,000 emigrants left Scotland bound for North America; from 1840 to 1853, nearly 30,000 emigrated from there; and in 1881 alone, 38,000 left for the United States and 3,000 left for Canada, mostly via Greenock.
The sixth installment in David Dobson’s Scots in the USA and Canada, 1825-1875 endeavors to identify, in the absence of official Scottish passenger lists to North America, as many as possible of the Scottish men, women, and children who took part in this great migration. Containing about 1,500 sketches not found in the prior books, Part Six brings the total number of passenger sketches to nearly 10,000.
Dr. Dobson’s findings come from primary sources in Scotland and North America. The newest book in the series attributes a number of contemporary newspapers and archives, including the Inverness Journal and Quebec City Gazette and the Scottish Catholic Archives and Delaware State Archives, respectively. Researchers will find a list of references at the back of each book.
Dr. Dobson has arranged these expatriates alphabetically in each Part and, while the descriptions vary, he gives the individual’s full name, place of residence in North America (country, state/province, or city), an identifying date, and the source of the information. In addition, many of the entries indicate the individual’s date of birth, father’s name and occupation or place of residence, spouse, or the name of the vessel upon which he or she arrived.